Increase in IHS fees confirmed for 6 February 2024, but who is exempt from it?

It has now been confirmed that the new rates will become effective as of 6 February 2024, which is 21 days after the order passed into law.

In general, any overseas migrants applying to stay for more than 6 in the UK or any applicants submitting a visa application inside the UK must pay for the IHS.

In this article, however, we will discuss who will be exempt from the payment.

Who does not need to pay but needs an IHS reference number for NHS services?

A child under 18 who has been taken into care by a local authority or a relevant civilian employee at NATO or the Australian Department of Defence in the UK (or their dependent), when submitting the application, won’t be required to pay as the amount after calculation will be “zero”.


Who does not need to pay or get an IHS reference number to use NHS services?

Some applicants do not need to pay IHS but will be able to access the NHS service for free:

  • applying for indefinite leave to enter or remain (ILE or ILR)
  • a health and care worker who is eligible for a Health and Care Worker visa (or their dependant)
  • applying under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • a diplomat or a member of a visiting armed forces and not subject to immigration control
  • a dependant of a member of the UK’s armed forces
  • the dependant of a member of another country’s armed forces who is exempt from immigration control
  • applying for a visa for the Isle of Man or Channel Islands
  • a British Overseas Territory citizen resident in the Falkland Islands
  • an asylum seeker or applying for humanitarian protection (or their dependant)
  • a domestic worker who has been identified as a victim of slavery or human trafficking
  • applying for discretionary leave to remain in the UK as someone who has been identified as a victim of slavery or human trafficking (or their dependant)
  • the Home Office’s domestic violence concession applies to you (or you’re their dependant)
  • being made to leave the UK would be against your rights under Article 3 of the European Convention of Human Rights (or their dependant)
  • an S2 Healthcare Visitor
  • for a Frontier Worker permit and have an S1 certificate


Who does not need to pay but NHS services cost extra

Applicants who intend to apply for a visitor visa or a visa granted for 6 months or less from outside the UK, do not need to pay for IHS fees and will not get an IHS reference number. However, they will need to pay for the charges if they use any NHS care services.


Contact Our Immigration Team

For expert advice regarding any aspect of the UK visa application, please contact our immigration team on 0203 384 3075

The content of this article is for general use and information only. Since each case should be prepared on its own merit and in light of the constant amendments to the Immigration Rules, it is important to note that the information provided must not be relied upon unless Migra & Co has either given written consent or has been officially engaged in relation to a specific immigration matter. As a result, Migra & Co will take no responsibility for any damage, cost or loss resulting from relying on the information contained in this article, blog and website.